With the mostly unloved Mercedes-Benz SLR McLaren set to get the official axe in 2009, the path is clear for the next McLaren-branded supercar to be unveiled. Expected to be built at its facility in Woking, England, McLaren has plans for the as-yet-unnamed vehicle to compete with Ferrari's incredible F430. Rumored to be powered by a 550-horsepower V8 engine featuring a basic design snagged from Mercedes and built by Mahle (that of the former Cosworth tuning fame), the power-to-weight ratio should handily outdo that of the Prancing Horse. Shortly after the new coupe codenamed P11 is unveiled, a convertible version is also expected.

True hardcore McLaren enthusiasts should mark 2012 as the year that McLaren returns to form with a proper replacement for its awe-inspiring F1 of a few years back. Powered by a lightweight version of the P11 architecture, this car codenamed the P12 is expected to be powered by a V10 engine with over 600 horsepower. The waiting list will likely start right... about... now.

[Source: Autocar]